image (2)A grass-roots, nonprofit organization serving greater Grand Rapids, Our Kitchen Table (OKT) promotes social justice and empowers our neighbors to improve their health and environment through information, community organizing and advocacy.

OKT believes that building viable, neighborhood-based, resident-led advocacy is fundamental to achieving this mission. We primarily target urban neighborhoods located within southeast Grand Rapids. You can view a video about OKT produced by the W K Kellogg Foundation here.

imagejpeg_0004Founded in 2003 as a call to action, OKT mobilizes low income women to build capacity by utilizing a community transformation model. Learning begins with an understanding and analysis of the root causes of oppression and its manifestations in our daily lives. Elements of oppression include structural barriers, race and gender bias and disparities in wealth and power.

Group work has been identified as a successful strategy for developing strong social networks among individuals who have suffered from social isolation and alienation. OKT creates a space where women build individual capacity through participation in a self-empowerment model that emphasizes (1) knowledge, (2) purposeful action on individual and collective levels and (3) leadership. This model equips women with the understanding and skills to effectively assess problems and seek solutions.

OKT’s Program for Growth20190528_130146

The Program for Growth involves parents and caregivers of students attending Grand Rapids Public Schools Martin Luther King Jr. Leadership Academy in food growing and healthy eating education.Through OKT’s each one-teach one philosophy, leadership of the program has come up from within.

View a PBS/WGVU “Michigan Experience” video about our Program for Growth here.

Educate to Elevate

OKT’s Cook, Eat, and Talk event morphed into a virtual event during the pandemic. At 3 p.m. the first Saturday* of each month, we welcome everyone to join us on Facebook Live @Our Kitchen Table for a cooking demo and dialogue about healthy eating strategies. Are you pregnant, breastfeeding, or the mom of a low-birth weight baby? Are you a mom diagnosed with overweight or obesity? Do you receive SNAP, WIC, or other food assistance? We hope you will join us!

  • Ask Winona Bynum, RD, what foods work for you and your medical issues.
  • Learn how to stretch your food budget.
  • Find out how to maximize your SNAP and WIC dollars at grocery stores and farmers markets.

The Southeast Area Farmers Market

OKT is the manager and sponsor of the Southeast Area Farmers Market. the market. We oversee vendors, host educational events and participate in Bridge Card (SNAP), WIC, Project Fresh, KCHD coupons and DoubleUp Food Bucks programs.



Lisa Oliver-King, executive director, admin@OKTjustice.org

Belinda Henderson, Southeast Area Farmers Market manager, SEAFM@OKTjustice.org

Estelle Slootmaker, communications manager, media@OKTjustice.org


4 thoughts on “About

  1. Pingback: This Day in Resistance History: The Asking Day Model « Grand Rapids Institute for Information Democracy

  2. Pingback: Gardening where you live « Grand Rapids Institute for Information Democracy

  3. Pingback: Our Kitchen Table to host food history classes at Bartertown Diner

  4. Pingback: Rapidian reports: Our Kitchen Table works to empower and support Southeast residents | Our Kitchen Table

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